If the national baseball writers who vote on the Cy Young Award for the National League have any common sense and brains inside their skulls, than I'll be able to look back on a major sports fan achievement in a few months. I was at Petco Park on August 1 to see my San Diego Padres get beat by 2008 NL Cy Young winner, Tim Lincecum. As a baseball fan and even as a Padres fan who has never gotten to the right Padres game to see 2007 Cy Young winner Jake Peavy pitch, this will mark the first time I have seen in-person a Cy Young award winner pitch. (I actually purchased tickets two days in advance for that August 1 game during a trip to San Diego this summer based on the fact it was supposed to be Peavy vs. Lincecum that night, but of course changed)
Lincecum is amazing, as Sports Illustrated's Tom Verducci pointed out so eloquently this summer, and his performance back on August 1 at Petco (a Giants win) was pretty dam good. And really all San Diego fans at this point should be fessing up to the fact that Lincecum is the hands-down NL Cy Young winner this season when you realize what he's done to the Friars in 2008. As the San Diego Union Tribune points out, Lincecum has pitched 43-1/3 innings against the Padres in '08. He has allowed only three runs on 26 hits and 19 walks against 49 strikeouts.(Yeah, I know haters, most double A pitchers would have done the same against the Padres this year, right?)
By the way folks, watching Lincecum on TV does zero baseball fan justice. You need to see this guy pitch in person at the ball park to understand how amazing he is. And try to get seats as close to the field as possible as my wife and I did on August at Petco Park with our jaws dropped at his unique rotation.
In the Giants 7-0 win over San Diego last night, he had 12 strikeouts. Adrian Gonzalez, the most overlooked player in the National League, struck out three times for the third time this season facing Lincecum. Lincecum threw a career-high 138 pitches last night, which is also the highest count in the major leagues this season.
Lincecum is now 17-3 and lowered his National League-leading ERA to 2.43. He also passed CC Sabathia for the major league strikeout lead with 237. Lincecum has accounted for more than 25 percent of San Francisco's wins this season.He should not be penalized for playing for a team way out of the play-off picture.
Another amazing piece of info in the SD Union Tribune today, his 134th pitch, a fastball, he still registered 94 on the Petco Park radar gun. That's crazy. Padres fan, who should know a little bit about solid pitching despite this nightmare 2008 season, should be leading the way in promoting Tim Lincecum as the 2008 NL Cy Young winner.
Who's with me?